Moira Kelly began acting in high school, when she was given a small role in the school production of Annie. Eventually deciding to give up her ambition of becoming a nun, she attended Marymount Manhattan College, and later chose to pursue an acting career.
Kelly made her acting debut in the TV movie Love, Lies and Murder, and went on to appear in several movies, such as The Boy Who Cried Bitch, Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me, and Chaplin. She also featured in several independent films, such as The Safety of Objects. However, she is perhaps best known as the voice of adult Nala in 1994's The Lion King, a role she reprised in two direct-to-video sequels.
Kelly also had a relatively successful career in television, beginning with a role in the short-lived drama To Have & To Hold. After leaving the first season of NBC's The West Wing, she joined the cast of the WB's One Tree Hill, as single mother Karen Roe; she left the show at the end of the fifth season.
She is married to businessman teve Hewitt, with whom she has two children.
- Moira had to ask permission from her hometown priest before taking a role in the film Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me because of an explicit sex scene.
- As a child, she aspired to become a nun.
- Screen Actors Guild Award, Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series, 2001 (for The West Wing)
- The Boy Who Cried Bitch (1991)
- Billy Bathgate (1991)
- Thirty Below Zero (1992)
- The Cutting Edge (1992)
- Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me (1992)
- Chaplin (1992)
- With Honors (1994)
- The Lion King (voice, 1994)
- Little Odessa (1994)
- The Tie That Binds (1995)
- Unhook the Stars (1996)
- Entertaining Angels: The Dorothy Day Story (1996)
- Love Walked In (1997)
- Changing Habits (1997)
- Drive, She Said (1997)
- Dangerous Beauty (1998)
- The Lion King 2: Simba's Pride (voice, 1998)
- Hi-Life (1998)
- Henry Hill (1999)
- The Safety of Objects (2001)
- A Woman Reported (2004)
- Two Tickets to Paradise (2006)
- The Beautiful Ordinary (2007)
- To Have & To Hold (regular, 1998)
- The West Wing (regular, 1999-2000)
- One Tree Hill (regular, 2003-2009)